Harvard Club in Concord Annual Dinner

Wednesday June 13, 2018

Guest Speaker: David Foster: Director of the Harvard Forest, ecologist and author, Harvard Faculty

Reading and Conserving New England: Insights from the  Land's History and Future

At no time in the last five hundred years could one have predicted the next era in New England's history. In fact, New England's landscape history is one of transformation, recovery and opportunity. While the future remains in our hands and is very much in balance, insights from the past and possible scenarios for the next century can help inform our thinking and guide a conservation future for the region.

David is an ecologist and author of Thoreau's Country-Journey through a Transformed Landscape; Forests in TIme-The Environmental Consequences of 1000 years of Change in New England; and Hemlock- A Forest Giant on the Edge. He has been a faculty member at Harvard since 1983 and Director of the Harvard Forest, the University's 4000-acre ecological laboratory and classroom, since 1990. David's research investigates landscape history and dynamics as a means of understanding the present in order to anticipate and help guide changes into the future.

David serves on the board of the Trustees of Reservations and as the president of the board of Highstead Foundation. In 2010 David and colleagues developed Wildlands and Woodlands-A Vision for the New England Landscape, which lays out an ambitious plan for the protection and conservation of forest and farmland across the region. His latest book - A Meeting of Land and Sea: Nature and the Future of Martha's Vineyard (2017) explores the history, ecology and conservation of New England's largest and most diverse island.